Birmingham Central Mosque is opening a soup kitchen to help the homeless and others in the local community.
The facility will open its doors for the first time today, from 5pm to 6pm, and will operate daily until January 1st.
Kasim Choudhry, who organised the kitchen, said: “We’re raising £2,000 to feed the homeless over the Christmas week because they should be able to enjoy Christmas.
“The mosque already has an active food bank but found that this was ineffective to those who did not have the means to cook the food.
According to the administrator Muhammad Ali, Birmingham Central Mosque has been running a food bank for almost four years.
“Christmas is the time when a lot of homeless people suffer,” he said. “We are hoping to have a good response as many people have come forward with their expertise to help.”
The initiative is supported by a number of local businesses, as well as by Balsall Heath Forum, AF Community Outreach and the Birmingham Food Drive.
Depending on the success of this first event, the soup kitchen could become a permanent fixture.
The mosque minibus will also take food to the people who cannot make it to the facilit.
Kasim added: “The kitchen is open to all the people struck by poverty who struggle and are in need of a warm meal, even if they do have a place where to live.”
The opening coincides with the 40th anniversary of Birmingham Central Mosque.
Kasim said he hoped the initaitive and others like it would help other sectors of the community build links with the mosque.
“We came about the idea of getting involved through the mosque to increase the Muslim involvement in the community,” he said. “It’s a way of counteracting Islamphobia as well.
“We are one city and we come together as one community.”